Monday, 14 December 2020

Silly Season Ramblings....

Happy Monday, Lovelies ( before I forget...THANK YOU SO MUCH for all your comments on the previous post. I love reading them all and only wish I had four more hands to reply to everyone! ).

I hope you are all keeping calm and sane while we wearily continue navigating our little boats of Life through the swells and troughs of 2020?  It feels very much like we're battling through something, doesn't it? Last night I was lying in bed and that movie with Robert Redford popped into my mind. The one where he's solo in a sinking yacht? I was thinking about how we're all, in some way or another, finding ways to survive these unsettling times. Podcasts and Vlogs have been a lifeline for me and really stepped up to provide much-needed daily entertainment and inspiration. Here's my shortlist of favourites. Do you have much-loved Podcasts or Vlogs that you could recommend?

πŸ’™ Arne and Carlos.

Oh my hat, these two, besides talented, generous, and full of incredibly informative snippets, are unintentionally incredibly funny too!




πŸ’™ The Last Homely House.

Hosted by Kate who lives on a farm in Northumberland with her four Cats, Hens, and a Goose.



πŸ’™ Paul Cooper's, the Fall of Civilisations.

Fascinating, informative, and brilliantly detailed narrative. Highly recommended if you're into History.



πŸ’™ Eight Miles From Home.

I never miss a Vlog detailing the nomadic life of this amazing couple Jay and Sascha and their adorable little "Moana" in the flesh called Story Ember. They restore my faith in Humanity.



Routines and rituals have also helped keep me grounded. When my boys were much younger their Dad was shot and paralyzed in a botched car-jacking. As you can imagine, it was a deeply distressing time for us all. What helped most were our daily routines which, even though internally I was buckling, kept us going! Simple disciplines of waking up and immediately heading to the kitchen to boil the kettle for our morning beverages, laying the breakfast table, stirring a pot of oatmeal, feeding the Dogs and Cats, filling the washing machine with laundry, and preparing the morning lessons for my homeschooled brood. These rituals forced me to stay in the moment rather than crumble into a soggy ball of despair and fear. Over time these routines became deeply ingrained survival tools, which I'm thankful for now. I'm reminded too that there are no mistakes, only lessons.

These days, without the distraction of small children, I'm still up at 4am! I make a lovely cup of coffee and get back into bed to read the daily online newspapers on my tablet. At 5am it's snack time for the furry-brood. By 6am I am at my desk answering emails and checking for messages on social media. At 7am it's breakfast then a walk about the garden to check on "everyone". This morning I noticed that an ailing banana plant I moved a year ago into a sunnier position, has finally flowered! 







My day continues in this more or less orderly fashion. In a way, repeating the same routines each day is like living and breathing a Mantra. There is calm to be found. And if you are easily amused as am I, humour in spades too.πŸ˜†




Our weekend visits to Kalk Bay still satisfies in so many ways. It's a ritual that rewards the effort of getting up early on a Sunday! The bakery had just opened, the bread was still warm, the coffee excellent ( oh, the joys of consistency! ), the staff predictably jovial and welcoming. Their routines raise my routines and make me want to do better! We've been frequenting this bakery for 18 years! They have yet to disappoint. A pleasant, slow amble along the harbour wall jutting into a sparkling seascape would have been enough but then this... three large seals dropped in for a visit. They are so like Dogs!





As usual, I'm off on a tangent! Let's chat crochet. If you've purchased Part 1 of the Chrysalis Mystery Make-Along then, as we speak, you'll find Part 2 in your Ravelry Library! I am having so much fun designing this Mystery-Along so I hope you'll have fun too and that it will keep your mind away from more troubling thoughts? I'm completely second-guessing my colourway of course. I'm not feeling so blue these days, more golden orange and salmon pink! Luckily many of you are amazing colourists and I've added a few images to the Ravelry pics album. So, if anyone is stuck for a colourway do head on over HERE. 



Noelene and I are running a Festive 12 Day Advent Quiz Competition over at the Workshop. There are prizes for answering simple and fun questions so if you're keen for a laugh and maybe winning a little prize, do head on over HERE.

I hope those of you Lovelies who commented on the last Blog Post and were picked by the random picks generator have received your free copy of the Chrysalis Throw Mystery-Makealong? Today, there are another 5 copies up for grabs, so don't forget to leave your Ravelry name if you comment. Good Luck! πŸ’—

It's 9am now and that means shower and make myself presentable ( to the grocery delivery person and the fur-kids). Who else? I have barely left the house since April! πŸ˜†


Wishing you all a lovely calm week ahead! Avoid drama and demagogues, which will only make you feel worse. Stay safe, wear your mask and shine on!

HUGS,
Jen πŸ’—








59 comments:

  1. Jen, I love your rambles and feel as if I am back in Cape Town, even though we have lived in the UK for 20 years now. Thank you x

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    Replies
    1. Aw, thank you...I fear I might bore everyone to tears but this really is my unexciting life at the mo! Then again it is Slaap Stad afteral? LOL! Happy week ahead! xox

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    2. There is definitely something calming about a morning routine that doesn't involve rushing to be somewhere! I live with my husband, elderly mother and our eldest son, but hubby and mother are late risers, so, me, being an early riser gets to enjoy a few hours of peace with my fur babies every morning! Sometimes joined by our eldest son if he isn't working, oh and countless cups of tea! πŸ˜‰ My Ravelry name is RHOSYNSARON πŸ₯°

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    3. Beautiful Jen can't wait to start. Ravelry name RMWatson

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  2. Gorgeous - ravelry name sfjw

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  3. Beautiful my ravelry name is sandrasimons

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  4. πŸ₯°Hummmmm! My morning always feels great when there’s a blogpost of yours!♥️🌲❄️♥️

    Ravelry: Minnekecrochet

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    Replies
    1. Aw, thanks so much! Happy week to you! xx

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  5. Beautiful my ravelry ID is dizzy21

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  6. Your rambles allow us to share a moment in time in your world . My Ravelry name is Grannyl3

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Layla, I appreciate you coming along for that moment. :D Happy week ahead1 xx

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  7. Love your patterns! Ravely ID Amyjane1000

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  8. Love the colours πŸŽ„ Ravelry name Wadkin 😊

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Polly! Hope your week is lovely! xox

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  9. I love love love your patterns. X-mas will be lonely this year so it could give me something to do (ravelry: Heidi120)

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    1. I hope so Heidi...that's the plan, to keep you all busy with some handwork that will take your mind of other less pleasant things! We're also having a pretty sparse Christmass this year. But we plan to buy the fur-kids loads of silly presents ( going to be fun to watch! ) :D Take care and sending a big hug! xox

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  10. Hi Jen, I really enjoyed your blog today! But I'm so sorry about the trauma you've been through! Sadly a lot of us can relate to these unfortunate events.
    As for your doggy, I'm afraid he's eating you colourways! πŸ˜† 🀣 πŸ˜‚
    Have a wonderful week! God bless.
    Thank you for the extension of the Chrysalis! Love your patterns!
    Ravelry: KarinEls

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    Replies
    1. Hi Karin, life hey...we just keep going ( and crocheting! ). Hahaha...so true, eating the colourway! :D Hope your week is beautiful! xox

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  11. Love the colors! ravelry name is cindyo101

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  12. Just stumbled in and you will now be part of my
    Morning routine. Love it!! My ravelry name is musiclady007

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    1. Oh, that's so lovely that you've popped in for a visit! Happy week to you! :D xx

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  13. Hi jen .
    Your designs are out of this world . Thank you for Giveaways.

    Raverly ID crochetvilla75

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much and, you are welcome! :D xx

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  14. So lovely. Routines are also what keep me sane these days.

    Ravelry - FrancineClouden

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Francine! Oh, definitely. I can't imagine a chaotic life just right now. Maybe when it's all behind us and we can breathe freely again...maybe I'll go on a crazy worldwide, spontaneous hike. I don't know...anything is possible. But for now, routine feels good. :D Happy week to you! xx

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  15. Beautiful Jen!!! My raverly name is:
    nancygortiz

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  16. Oh, Jen. Sending Big hugs to you. I'm so sorry about your sons's Dad. Even in those time you manage to homeschooled all your sons. You're amazing. Now I'm ashamed to feel bored just because of a few months of online learning.
    And by the way, I've been wanting to ask about the podcast you mentioned in one of your vids. Looks like you read my mind across the big pond. Lol. Thank you for listing them up here. :)
    xx,
    Yunita

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    1. Hi Yunita, oh don't feel ashamed, homeschooling can be very boring at times! :D I hope the Podcast I mentioned in previous vids is one of the ones I listed above? These really are my favourites ( at the moment ). :D Hugs and wishing you a lovely week...even if it's a bit boring. Heehee.

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    2. Yes, it is. Arne and carlos! I didn't hear Arne right the first time. :D.
      I'll check them all. Once again, thank you.
      My weekend was just what we expected from three little girls. Loud with a twist of drama. Lol. My second daughter cried dramatically before we left my parents' house because she didn't want to leave her Grandad. Oh well.

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  17. Hello, dear Jen! I've missed your blog posts and I'm happy to read this one today :) Funny coincidence is that this morning, as it often happens lately, I woke up with Emerger's "State of Mind" melody in my head :) (thanks for sharing their music in older post, now I love not only South African art, but South African music, too ❤)
    You're right, one's routines help raise other's routines. What I read today not only made me want to do better, but made me believe I can do better. Thank you! Sending you hugs and big thanks for the free copy last week. Chrysalis is growing more and more beautiful!

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Veneta and I am absolutely thrilled that you enjoy Emerger as much as I do. Wishing you a beautiful, relaxing and creative week! Big hugs! xx

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  18. how could you second guess your colourway it's blues and pinks the best colour combo there is 😍😍
    ravelry: DaliaAdel

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    1. Hahaha...really? I love Blue and Green, but I have another favourite Orange and Pink! :D I won't change this colourway though. I'm sticking to it 'til the end! :D xx

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  19. Your blog posts are way more interesting than mine. I always like to include photos of what I am working on whether it is crochet or cooking or my travels . . . not so much travel lately. I have to mention that my day always starts with cat chaos. My cats are always eagerly awaiting my arrival to their bowls but then they swing into their chaos which involves dashing around the house, up and down the stairs, running over me sometimes in the process. I have 3 young cats that I adopted in the last year so they have lots of energy. I miss my elderly Maine Coons that had been companions for nearly 17 years but I am happy to have the youngsters during these difficult times.

    You have beautiful designs. I am not sure I am up for the fancy stuff these days. I have been doing mosaic crochet for a few months, it isn't quite so difficult as concentrating on the beautiful stitches of the elaborate patterns you come up with. I always learn a lot from doing any crochet project regardless of difficulty level. So many designs to try.

    My ravelry name is cbarrosdallas

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    1. Your young Cats sound like so much fun and you are so right, they make a cute if somewhat chaotic distraction from the swirling bad news outside. I totally understand that you'd want to crochet more relaxing projects. I do too, but my darn hook has a mind of it's own. Oh, I also miss travelling but here we are, making the best of a bad situation. Maybe next year? HUGS! xx

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    2. <3 . . . maybe South Africa will be on my destination list after we are free to travel. I have a couple of non-crochet friends down there but I might be up for some yarn shopping. I have seen some beautiful yarns coming from SA but shipping is expensive. Well, whoknows? I might break down and buy some. :-)

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  20. Another stunner ! Have no idea how you or anyone else can design patterns... I wouldn't even know how to begin. Thanks for your efforts :-) Ravelry: Elpida25

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  21. I have been admiring your work for a long time, edging my way to try your patterns. There are several I want to make into pillows for my couches. Maybe this year as I need a fresh start after this past year - as does everyone I am sure. Ravelry name: Gramjams

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  22. I love your patterns. So much so I'm on my second High Tea Floral Throw. The first one is on it's merry to my mum and dad in Norfolk. UK.
    Ravelry name: Gablescrochet

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  23. Hi Jen. I enjoyed your blog today (as always). My ravelry name is cksteffen. Thank you.

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  24. Thank you for your lovely patterns, Jen. I feel so smart and accomplished after I've finished one - but it's all thanks to your genius. I've only done the Spark Joy and My African Valentino, but working my up to doing something larger. Ravelry username: catahaircombs

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  25. It is such a lovely pattern! My ravelry name is kfminervino.

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  26. Thanks for your blog enjoyed reading this one today there is much to be thankful for in life and yes there is alife after the pandemic .here in Australia we are starting to get some normalcy back with only a couple of cases from Aussies who have returned home form affected countries and have been placed in mandatory quarantine for at least 2 weeks. Heddy56 ravelry name

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  27. What a lovely pattern, just what I needed with the announcement today of a new lockdown in the Netherlands. My Ravelryname: francoisemaarse

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  28. 4am is such an early start, you must go to bed very early! I think I could manage it if I was rewarded with seals though, how lovely.
    JayT1

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  29. Your crochet designs are beautiful.
    Ravelry name: MariaParrishOtt

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  30. Wow! And thank you for the other links too!
    I'm Jocerane in Ravelry.

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  31. I just ❤all your patterns your colors are absolutely beautiful.My ravelry name is Bevmarks0 thank you for all you do for us in your group πŸ’™πŸŽ…πŸŽ„πŸ’™πŸŽ…πŸŽ„❤πŸŽ…πŸŽ„❤πŸŽ…πŸŽ„πŸ’™❤πŸŽ…πŸŽ„❤πŸ’™πŸ·πŸŽ„

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  32. Thank you so much! I love you work and I look forward to starting my new crochet project. My Ravelry name is MariaParrishOtt

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  33. I really enjoy reading your blog posts and the links to the videos were wonderful. Arne and Carlos are so much fun to watch. They are always good for a laugh. I love reading about everyone's different lives. So different than mine here in the US. You are such a talented designer, please keep delighting all of us. My ravelry name is KookyforYarn

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